QSK mod completed, tuner added

Shack updates were completed yesterday with the modification of my AL80B to allow QSK operation and with the arrival of a Palstar tuner.

Celebrating diversity with QRP & QRO

The results of the mod are great although its implementation has room for improvement. I wrote up a few “points of uncertainty” that I had while performing it in case others are similarly inclined to add QSK to their AL80B. I uploaded that info as a Page (located here) rather than a post.

The balun switching scenario I recently blog-pondered won’t be necessary – with a 1:1 balun, the Palstar (built like a tank, BTW) tunes all bands 10-80 with all the authority of a Navy Seal DI.

Next up is a 40-meter vertical dipole for November’s CQWW.



  6 comments for “QSK mod completed, tuner added

  1. June 7, 2011 at 2:13 pm

    Very nice additions to the shack and very nice pictures of the amp,tuner and as always the K3.

  2. June 7, 2011 at 3:08 pm

    Hi John, nice shack. I like the big Palstar, got one myself. They are doing a fine job, the only issue I got is that the lettering is coming off. So, by now I can’t see in what position the antennaswitch is. 73, Bas

    • June 7, 2011 at 3:13 pm

      Wow, sorry to hear that, Bas. If you ever get to Houston you can borrow my label maker!

  3. June 7, 2011 at 7:32 pm

    John, even though it will be a while before I acquire an amp, I just wanted to say a word of thanks for posting such helpful information like this. It seems incredulous that so many of these amps can be in service, surely many using the same QSK add-in, and yet such uncertainties still exist in the manual. Not something you’d want to make a costly mistake on. Please keep up up to date on how it works for you.

    • June 7, 2011 at 7:44 pm

      I think the vast majority of people order the amp with the QSK board installed. I started to do that myself until I heard there was a 2-month wait.

      Maybe I should charge Ameritron’s labor price ($100) for the installation and promise a 7-10 day turnaround…

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